Month: May 2018

CLEAR Coaching Model

When it comes to executive coaching, there are several models that coaches use to help their clients. Whatever the model used, the ultimate aim is to bring about a change in the way executives act so that they are able to lead their organizations in a better way. strengthscape has found good results with use of the DANCE methodology in its executive coaching programs. One of the types of coaching used by some coaches is called Transformational Coaching and it is based on the principle that people should begin to view things in a new perspective so that they begin behaving in a more appropriate way.

One of the important aspects of Transformational Coaching is the CLEAR model which owes its origin to Peter Hawkins. Developed during the 1980s, this coaching methodology was in vogue before the advent of the GROW model which gradually grew more popular. However, even today, many coaches include the CLEAR model in their executive coaching kit when they realize that their clients need to undergo a major paradigm shift and take greater responsibility for their actions.
What is CLEAR?
In their book titled “Coaching, Mentoring and Organizational Consultancy: Supervision and Development,” Peter Hawkins and Nick Smith explain that the term “CLEAR” stands for:
Contracting, Listening, Exploring, Action, Review
  • Contracting refers to the beginning of the executive coaching session during which the coach starts the discussion and defines the areas to be covered, laying down the ground rules through discussion with the client. This is also the stage where the coach and the client determine the outcome they expect from the coaching program
  • Listening is the stage when the coach pays close attention to the words and body language of the client to grasp what he is trying to communicate. The coach may also ask some questions or suggest a few other lines of thought that allow his client gain valuable insight about the issues being discussed.
  • Exploring involves two parts: working towards the client getting a better understanding of how he is personally affected by the situation and exploring what action he can take in the future to arrive at an appropriate solution to deal with the situation.
  • Action means the coach helps the client actually select the way he wants to act, and to formulate the steps he will take over a period of time.
  • Review refers to summing up the points covered in the executive coaching program, and highlighting the decisions taken by the client. The coach also collects feedback from the coachee regarding how helpful the program was and which aspects need to be modified during programs in the future.
  • By using the CLEAR coaching model, coaches encourage their clients to change the way they view situations, people around them and their own capabilities. This is important because unless this sort of a transformation occurs, the most high-profile executive coaching program will not show long-lasting results
Filed under: CoachingTagged with: , ,

MI Model In Life Coaching

Aims at changing the attitudes and behavior of executives and this change is expected to translate into better styles of working and leadership. The secret to achieving such change is to get the client to commit to solving conflicts and achieving the predetermined goals. The Orange Academy makes use of the DANCE methodology, but there are several other styles that life coaching experts use depending on the situation, and one of these is motivational interviewing.

What is Motivational Interviewing?

William R. Miller who worked with alcoholics developed the basic methodology of motivational interviewing (MI). This methodology was first explained in the book he authored along with Stephen Rollnick titled “Motivational Interviewing: Preparing People to Change Addictive Behavior.” Over time, several changes have been effected to the original definition and as of 2009, MI is defined as “A collaborative, person-centered form of guiding to elicit and strengthen motivation for change.”
MI is a method of counseling that life coaches now use extensively to encourage their clients to explore the motivations behind particular behavior and carry out steps to make relevant changes. The coach does not sit in judgment over the client, nor does he confront him; the focus in on asking the client questions that help to identify critical areas of ambivalence. Often, the client is unaware of his exact position on a given topic and the life coaching expert listens in a proactive way to help the client identify and resolve this ambivalence.

Principles of MI Model In Life Coaching 

  • The main principles of MI include the following:
  • An empathetic approach in which the coach seeks to gain a better understanding of how the client views a particular issue.
  • Helping the client identify what are his guiding values and principles in life
  • Working with the client to explore the gap between these values and how much of it translates into practice or how he expects his life to  be like and what it currently is.
  • Helping the client examine the reason for this gap, and determine ways to make changes.
  • Encouraging the client to successfully make the transition with confidence.
For life coaching using MI to work, the coach has to adhere to the element of a collaborative approach in which the coach works in unison with the client rather than confronting him. By building a rapport with the client, the coach seeks to draw out the thoughts and ideas the client has about making a change. However, the most important aspect of this form of life coaching is probably the emphasis it places on giving the client full autonomy to determine his course of action.

Filed under: CoachingTagged with: , ,

GROW Coaching Methodology

Involves the use of several techniques and The Orange Academy uses the DANCE model which is a stepwise process of moving from becoming aware of the behavior that needs changing to actually making the transformation. However, there are other coaching models that leadership coaches use, and one of these is the GROW model. Quoting wikipedia,

“The GROW model (or process) is a technique for problem solving or goal setting. It was developed in the United Kingdom and was used extensively in the corporate coaching market in the late 1980s and 1990s.
There have been many claims to authorship of GROW as a way of achieving goals and solving problems. While no one person can be clearly identified as the originator Graham Alexander, Alan Fine, Sir John Whitmore, who are well known in the world of coaching, made significant contributions. Max Landsberg also describes GROW in his book The Tao of Coaching”

What is GROW?
When you take a journey, you need to begin with deciding the destination, look at where you presently stay, find ways to get to the destination and get everyone prepped to reaching there. Sir John Whitmore, human resources consultant and coach, made a major contribution to developing the GROW model which, follows a similar methodology. In his book titled “Coaching for Performance: GROWing People, Performance and Purpose” he explains how GROW is an acronym for Goal, Reality, Options and Will. Using this model, you can design a leadership coaching session that helps your team proceed through any obstacle it faces.

Any job becomes easier when you break it down into a series of smaller tasks; so the key task in leadership coaching is to set small and specific goals. During this process, it is important you clearly visualize what it is that you wish to achieve in very specific and relevant terms. Besides, you ought to make sure these goals are attainable, because achieving them is going to give you a confidence boost to undertake the rest of the journey. Making these goals time-bound ensures you do not lose steam halfway through the process.

This step refers to taking stock of your present situation in the context of the goals you set. Evaluate the resources you possess, and the factors that can help you or come in the way of your progress. Understand thoroughly the nuances of your situation and think about the knowledge and skills you possess to move towards achieving your goals.

Before you proceed further, you ought to consider the options available to you to deal with your realities. At this stage, you ought to list out both the strengths and weaknesses of your team because this gives you an idea of how to go about achieving your goals.

This step involves the most important part of the leadership coaching process – getting your team to commit to taking the necessary action. This step is what provides the motivation and the driving force that will take you towards the end point of the journey.

Although the GROW model list the steps in leadership coaching, it is not essential that you follow them in this same order. In many instances, you will find yourself shifting gears between the steps in random order and this flexibility is good because it allows you to keep improvising as and when required.

Filed under: CoachingTagged with: , ,

Qualities Of A Good Leader

A good leadership instinct can be acquired and developed over time by any and every individual. Behind every ordinary face lies an extraordinary leader who needs to be identified and polished so as to face the challenges and test of time. However, there are certain management skills which should be present in every competent Qualities Of A Good Leader

6 Qualities Of A Good Leader

  1. Exemplary character – A leader displays the figure of a Godfather and an icon. He should be able to portray an exemplary character of being trustworthy and reliable in every aspect so as to be appreciated by employees and colleagues. A true leader is one who signifies and reflects a strong character, worth the respect and position that has been acquired by him. Honesty and integrity, therefore, are the two characteristics which should stay with him throughout his life tenure and get buried with him.
  2. Being enthusiastic – Showing enthusiasm towards one’s work or role as a leader makes him gain more attention and popularity. People look up to such leaders, respond openly to them and also consider them as a source of inspiration. As a leader, he has to be focused on his targets and also drive others to focus on their respective targets to jointly produce effective and positive results. This can happen only if he does not hesitate to roll up his sleeves and get down to cleaning the dirt himself when required.
  3. Being confident – For a good management of affairs, a leader has to be extremely confident about his decisions and endeavors. Being a role model for others, he cannot afford to be shaky and hesitant; instead he has to stand clear, confident and straight towards his ultimate goals. A confident leader can extract the best efforts and results from his team towards the attainment of the proposed objective and can come out with flying colors, much beyond his own expectation.
  4. Being organized – Leadership management calls for an orderly functioning in a purposeful manner, especially during times of uncertainties. Only a positive demeanor can infuse a new life in an otherwise confused and uncertain team.
  5. Tolerance level – Being calm composed and tolerant of ambiguity are the true qualities of an ardent leader. Management skills can be mastered by portraying a brave front, especially during times of crisis. Being ‘Mr. Cool’ can solve many problems without much effort and can promise smooth sailing towards the journey of achieving one’s targets.
  6. Excellence has no substitute- A good leader only settles for the best. Maintaining high standards, consistency in performance and being proactive in raising the bar, so as to achieve the highest position, should be the whole and sole aim of a true leader.
Filed under: LeadershipTagged with: , ,

Training Games

A practical knowledge, in any field Like Training Games,definitely leaves a greater mark and a better understanding of any lesson or activity undertaken. The same rule applies with sharpening one’s leadership skills as well. In the corporate sector, a lot of games and activities have been introduced in order to brush-up leadership qualities of professionals and executives. These games and activities not only enhance further growth of grey cells, but also assist in polishing one’s capabilities as a leader. Let’s have a look, what role they play in enhancing leadership qualities and bringing out a better leader in you.

1. Training Games and activities, conducted for betterment of leadership skills, help one in analyzing his own self, more than anything else. It points out the weaknesses and short-comings of an individual to him, thereby assisting him in introspecting the positive and negative aspects of his own behavioral pattern. You can only improve yourself if there is scope for the same and if you know where you are lacking.

2. Leadership training games and activities play a pivotal role in boosting the morale of individuals and enhancing their overall personality. It gives them an opportunity to get rid of their stage fear and take up the challenge to lead the company towards achievement of its goals. Remember, experience and opportunity received is the key to succeeding as a powerful and competent leader.

3. Organizational skills, development of great team-building skills and the knack to handle a large group of people, all these qualities get a boost if an individual is exposed to participating in several varied games and activities for the improvement of his personal leadership qualities. These programs and activities make a person better equipped with knowledge in multi-tasking, thereby enabling overall personality development of the individual.

4. A good leader does not comprise on his success and position as a winner. Games conducted for individuals for enhancing leadership skills help them to imbibe a habit of excelling in their respective field. Not only do they make their way towards success smooth and easily achievable, but are also capable enough to easily guide their team-workers towards their collective goals.

Filed under: CoachingTagged with: , ,

OSKAR Coaching Model

Organizations who hire a business coaching expert do so for two major reasons: to identify the issues that affect their functioning below par and to equip their staff to deal with these issues in the right manner. Different coaches use different methodologies depending on the type of coaching that a particular situation requires. strengthscape for example, uses the DANCE methodology to good effect. Besides the other executive coaching models such as GROW, CLEAR and Motivational Interviewing, there is another methodology called the OSKAR Coaching model.

What is OSKAR?
OSKAR stands for Outcome, Scaling, Know-How, Affirm & Action and Review. This model was the brainchild of Karen Whittleworth and Andrew Gilbert which they developed by taking the concepts of the GROW model to the next level.

Outcome is the first stage where the coach sets the stage for the process of coaching by finding out how ready the client is for making the change. The executive coaching expert interacts with the client and gets a clear understanding of the goals the client wants to strive towards and determines the objectives of the coaching session.

Scaling is the next stage where the coach and client work out the client’s current position with respect to where he wants to be. This stage helps to give a concrete idea of the present status that becomes the starting point for change.

Know-How is the stage of collecting information about the strengths of the client that have brought him to his current level. During this stage of executive coaching, the coach has to help the client gain an awareness of the resources that are available to him, and build confidence in his abilities, skills and experience that will help make the transition.

Affirm and Action is probably the most important stage where the coach reinforces the client’s confidence by stating and affirming the positives the client has discovered during the know-how stage. This affirmation is followed up by helping the client determine each of the steps and actions he will take to make the change.

Review forms an important last stage of this model in which the coach reviews the progress made by the client in implementing the actions he had determined. Here, the coach pays attention to focus on the positives rather than the areas that the client failed to work on.

The OSKAR model is effective for not just executive coaching, it can also be put to good use by leaders and managers who wish to serve as leadership coaches for their employees.

Filed under: CoachingTagged with: , ,

Public Speaking Skills

Leadership is synonymous to public speaking. When a leader addresses a crowd or a group of people with a purpose, it is nothing but public speaking. Every good leader has to master his communication skills in order to convey his ideas, aspirations and goals in clear cut terms, for a successful completion of his endeavor. This, on the other hand, can be fruitfully achieved only if a leader proves himself as a good orator.

To become a good public speaker, a leader has to stringently follow and keep in mind some key points which lead to development of quality public speaking skills in him. The first and foremost feature of mastering this skill is to practice what you preach. In other words, it is simply putting into action what you have learnt so far from your experiences. Impressive public speaking also involves re-sourcing for further skill building. While addressing a group of people, always remember to keep the speech original, enjoyable, simple to understand, organized and purposeful so as to grab maximum attentiveness and participation from the listeners.

It would be needless to say that leadership training involves this soft skill training as well. A big part of leadership is communication. Public speaking skills are an integral part of communication which is used as a medium for getting work done from co-workers and teammates. However, when addressing a crowd, make sure to specify the purpose of making the presentation, the desired outcome and the targeted goals and objectives therein. A listener would look forward to whether your speech is effective enough to strike a cord within him, is he able to connect with it, is the tone appropriate and relaxed enough, has the right technique been used to put the points across, is the effort meaningful, impact-ful and worth taking a message home. All these positives would make the leader heard, focused and would also convey his consistency of purpose.

A leader has to convey his purpose not only to team-workers but also to other larger groups of people who might be related to his targets directly or indirectly. He has to keep the public informed, gain financial assistance, encourage effective networking, inform funders, convince elected officials, persuade people and promote events and programs, all through his effective and powerful public speaking skills.

In a nutshell, a reputed executive coaching can glide you through a smooth pathway of leadership training, thereby converting your managerial effectiveness into perfect leadership skills and making you a full-fledged leader in every aspect required.

Filed under: CoachingTagged with: , ,

Become a Life Coaching Unveiled

We always tend to associate coaching with counseling, consulting or mentoring. Life Coaching breaks all these rules and introduces itself as self-identification by an individual who tries to analyze and work out what might work the best for his personal benefits and growth in life as a whole. Life Coaching assigns you with the benefit of having a personal coach to resolve all your issues relating to every small or big decision taken in your everyday life which in turn would determine your success or failure in life.

If we let loose the balloon strings of our imagination, we would be able to comprehend that every trivial thought generating in our brain leads to a more fulfilling and satisfying life, if the action taken as a result of that thought proves to be a rightful and intelligent one. God forbid, if that thought is not-so-fulfilling, as we might put it, the action thereby would lead to an undesirable and unbalanced situation, thereby making our success take a back seat. Life Coaching assists and trains you to opt for the right decision, when you get stuck at the crossroads with multiple options, thereby working for your self-enhancement towards achieving bigger, better and more effective goals in life.

Life Coaching has a very wide sphere though. It is not just restricted to business jurisdictions; its boundaries are widespread and cover a whole range of aspects in life. Right from spiritual and personal growth, personal and professional Coaching relations and intimacy, family and parenting, stress management and balance to career planning and development, motivation and time management, entrepreneurial and small business development, creativity for Artists, Writers, Musicians and Performers, issues like health, aging, lifestyle and self-care to every small or big issue governing one’s life, Life Coaching touches each and every cord of an individual’s life and provides solace from every trivial or major problem which might come in one’s way of a smooth and successful life.

Wishes and dreams do not come true by themselves. A consistent effort has to be taken towards fulfillment of these wishes. Life Coaching gives your dreams a shape and makes them come true by fulfilling every vacuum or space which might be present therein.

Filed under: CoachingTagged with: , , ,

How To Be An Effective Listener

When asked about your communication skills what comes to your mind? For most people the image created is either of giving a speech in a packed auditorium or writing an engaging piece. What is common between these two: they are related to the sender in the communication process. What this means is that most of us picture ourselves as the sender. But this is an incomplete view of communication – the other significant aspect of communication occurs from the receiver. And it is this aspect that we tend to ignore. We are so busy becoming good speakers that we forget it is equally critical to become good listeners.

The communication process is incomplete till the message is received and comprehended by the receiver. And The communication skills can be comprehensively developed when we talk about both conveying and receiving communication effectively.

This article discusses how to enhance listening skills. Listening is the process of hearing and comprehending a message and taking appropriate action or providing feedback.
We spend all our time in enhancing speaking skills but pay practically no attention to listening. So here are a few pointers for enhancing listening skills

First, listening requires a great deal of concentration and attention. While listening your mind should not be pre-occupied with other thoughts. Listen and concentrate on only to what is being said.

Secondly, leave your prejudices and judgement aside. The message is more important than who delivers it or how it is delivered.

Free your environment of physical distractions like noise, mobile phones etc. The less the stimuli in your environment fighting for your attention, the better will be your listening abilities.
Try to internalize the message by relating it your existing knowledge, ideas and experiences. This will help you retain the message longer.

Provide feedback especially if additional information or explanation is required. The most critical trait of an active listener is providing feedback. This results in a two-way communication which is way more interesting than a monologue and also helps in generating new ideas.

Don’t interrupt the speaker while he is talking. Keep your observations for when there is a pause or till the end of the communication.

Listen to understand not criticize. Critical listening is important but listening only for the purpose of criticism seldom results in effective listening.

Read between the lines. Concentrate not only on the words but also the body language of the speaker, this will help you in understanding the underlying meaning of the message.

Following these simple strategies can take you a step closer to becoming an effective listener

The BizComm program of Strengthscape comprises of a detailed module on Effective Listening.

Filed under: CoachingTagged with: , ,

How To Make Effective Presentations

Among the plethora of skills required by professionals in today’s business world, presentation skills are among the most important. A large chunk of business communication happens through presentations, be it a sales pitch for clients or presenting ideas to your own management.

Mostly when we talk about presentations skills, the first notion that comes to mind is knowing PowerPoint well.  What we need to remember is that PowerPoint is just a tool used for presentations and all presentations do not rely on this tool. Presentation skills should be adaptable to a variety of tools and should come in handy even when no external presentation tools are available. As we have already stipulated presentation tools include Power Point, some other commonly used presentation tools are flip charts and personal one-to-one discussions.

The key to an effective presentation

The key to an effective presentation lies in effective handling of the various steps involved in designing and delivering the presentation.

The first step to a presentation is understanding why and the how of the presentation. Answer a few pertinent questions and you will understand better how to design an effective presentation. You should know the purpose of the presentation and the audience thoroughly. Understanding these will help you in designing a presentation appropriate for the audience and the occasion.

Once you have understood the purpose and your audience, design the presentation by carrying out thorough research. Find out facts and figures and always use reliable and credible data. The effectiveness of a presentation depends on how well credible your information is.

When the research is done on what needs to be presented we must decide on how to present. This is where the design of the presentation takes place. We must decide on whether the presentation will be all about facts or will we weave a story to string the presentation together. We must also decide on whether we will concentrate on presenting the slides or chart or use them only as an aid. The style of presentation will take shape at this stage.

After all the background work is ready, we then move on to the delivery stage of a presentation. This is considered to be a very critical stage since the outcome of the interaction will depend on this stage. In the delivery stage we need to establish our credibility and rapport with the audience. We create an impression on the audience just with our appearance and body language. Ensure that this impression is positive be dressing appropriately and maintaining a positive and confident body language. Know what you want to say even without the presentation tools, use them only as a reference. Be thorough in your preparation and present confidently. Your style of presentation will largely depend on the type of audience. Practice delivery before the D Day. No matter how seasoned you are rehearsing is always a good idea.

These guidelines can assist you in making effective presentations using a variety of tools. Following a structure and process while designing and delivering any presentation is the key.

The PresentSmart program of Strengthscape equips you with effective presentation skills.

Filed under: CoachingTagged with: ,